Washington State Ferries has confirmed the Sidney to Anacortes ferry route will not return to service until 2030 at the earliest.
In a media release, the Town of Sidney said they had just recently learned that due to a vessel shortage the service would not resume.
The ferry service ceased operating in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic and has not yet
resumed due to a shortage of qualified crew and the retirement of several vessels.
The ferry route between Sidney and Anacortes has historic significance, 2022 would have marked the 100th anniversary of the ferry service with the community of Anacortes, which has also been a Sister City to Sidney since 1996.
In 1922, the vessel became a converted kelp carrier at the foot of Beacon Avenue. The ferry service grew into a source of tourism for Sidney.
“This is difficult news to receive. There are certainly economic impacts for our local business community, which thankfully has shown remarkable resilience in adapting to the changing realities since 2020,” said Mayor Cliff McNeil-Smith.
“At this time, Council and Town staff are turning our attention to the existing ferry terminal lease and the implications associated with this recent announcement.”
Washington State Ferries provides the ferry service through an international ferry terminal at Tulista Park and have a lease and operating agreement that extends through 2031.